As the Hebrew people were traveling through the wilderness after being set free from the bondage of Egyptian slavery by God's miraculous intervention, many began to grumble and complain that they had little to eat. Moses prayed and God sent them Manna, which in Hebrew means "What is it". The bread which came down from heaven was miraculously given.
They were to grind up the manna and make bread from it. Manna was their staple food in their journey to the Promised Land and it kept them alive through that journey. It is interesting that as they crossed over into their land of God's promise the manna ceased and they ate sumptuously on the food of the land.
As the little babe in the manger grew, his ministry of the miraculous spread far and wide. At one point he fed thousands by breaking bread and fish from one little boy's five barley loaves and two small fish which he had brought to eat.
We are told in the Scripture that Jesus was born in the City of David in an area called Bethlehem. Bethlehem was actually two words combined which were Bet Lehem meaning the House of bread (BET--House and Bread-- Lehem).
At certain times in Jesus' ministry he referred to himself as "I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live forever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.”
As we cast our heart's eyes toward the manger scene we see a little babe wrapped in cloth and lying in a manger. It is He who is the Bread of Life. He is the Promised One, the Messiah, the Savior of those who "eat of this bread". He is that Bread with which we may live forever.
The Christmas that we celebrate as Christians was the promise of everlasting life which God gave to all who would believe upon Him. That Babe is our Salvation.
Dr. Johnny M. Ashburn, ThD